The body of the queenfish is elongate and moderately compressed; the largest recorded specimen was 12 inches. The head is compressed with the upper profile depressed over the eyes. The mouth is large. The color is bluish above becoming silvery below and the fins are yellowish. Queenfish can be distinguished from other croakers by their large mouth, the base of the second dorsal and anal fins being about equal, and the wide space between the two dorsal fins.
Queenfish feed on small, free swimming crustaceans, small crabs, and fishes. Adult queenfish spawn in the summer. The eggs are free floating. Tiny young queenfish, less than 1 inch long, appear in late summer and fall; first at depths of 20 to 30 feet, gradually moving shoreward until they enter the surf zone when 1 to 3 inches long.